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Comment: Re:Absurd (Score 1) 281

by jaseuk (#48600479) Attached to: Eric Schmidt: To Avoid NSA Spying, Keep Your Data In Google's Services

No not absurd. If there systems are designed so they have no access to this information, then they can't hand it over. They can't be compelled to re-engineer their systems.

Apple and Microsoft can most likely offer similar assurances soon, but probably won't.

Now - none of this helps you if the spies have certs + network TAPs, but a lot better than how things were sounding before.

Jason.

Comment: Re:If you can't crack the password, then don't. (Score 1) 146

by jaseuk (#48081945) Attached to: Details of iOS and Android Device Encryption

I agree that Apple can't give an agency access to the device.

There is still some question around any icloud backup. You can lose a device and restore to a replacement. You can forget your password and go through the reset process. These two mechanisms tell us that in fact Apple could if pressured hand over an iCloud backup with the means to decrypt it, provided that they intercept the forgotten password process.

Of course there could be some legal reason why the agency cannot change the password. If inclined of course, they could very well intercept a password reset e-mail from Apple in any case,

But if I was very security consious, then disabling all cloud services would give me a suitably secure phone.

Jason

Comment: Re: better name (Score 1) 349

by jaseuk (#48061745) Attached to: Possible Reason Behind Version Hop to Windows 10: Compatibility

Nah

r2 is fine.

*2000 = workstation 2000
2003 = windows XP server
*2003 sr2 = windows xp sp2 server
2008 = windows vista server
*2008 R2 = windows 7 server
Server 2012 = windows 8.0 server
*Server 2012 r2 = windows 8.1 server

* prefix are the ones I've generally been happy with. The others have been pretty looking turkeys (as you'd expect from desktop editions)

Jason

Comment: Re: No alternative system is available ? (Score 3, Insightful) 145

by jaseuk (#48044793) Attached to: UK Government Tax Disc Renewal Website Buckles Under Pressure

Yesterday the phone service was offline too.

I know because I renewed yesterday.

The website was fineby the afternoon.

Why the service had trouble is a mystery to me, the only apparent difference is instead of saying your disc is in the post it now explains this is not required. Nothing new about anything else.

Jason

Comment: Re:I would like to see a return... (Score 4, Interesting) 120

by jaseuk (#48018893) Attached to: Apple Faces Large Penalties In EU Tax Probe

The USA may have highest per-capita spending, but that hides the fact that you have a system where very few people OVERPAY for your health-care compared to much of the rest of the developed world. It doesn't mean it's evenly spent.

http://liberalconspiracy.org/2... : "For a direct comparison, that means that in England the government spends around $3,200 per capita on healthcare and covers the entire population whereas in the US the federal government spends around $3,700 per capita and yet covers less than a third of the population."

You should have a much better economy of scale, particularly with drugs purchasing, research and best practice. Yet it doesn't bear out in practice somehow...

Jason.

Comment: Re:So everything is protected by a 4 digit passcod (Score 1) 504

by jaseuk (#47943873) Attached to: Apple Will No Longer Unlock Most iPhones, iPads For Police

Well the only way you can unlock it is by tapping in the pass-code. If you have it configured correctly then it will wipe after 10 attempts. After the 6th attempt it will disable for 1 minute. So you either have 10 chances which will take several minutes to complete. On the other hand to brute force you would have to do this in batches of 4-5 tries, with the owner correctly unlocking between attempts and not being suspicious. It would probably be easier just to use a "hard hack" such as torture or assault to get the pass-code or setup a camera.

Of course the touch-id is a potential weakness, but also a strength as it prevents over the shoulder interception of the pin, while the PIN is still needed from time-to-time.

I would be pretty happy with a 4 digit "simple" pass-code in this situation. It's secure enough for me. I'd rather not encourage "hard hacks".

Jason.

Comment: Re:Alternative explanation (Score 2) 398

This has been rather done to death (http://www.extremetech.com/computing/186576-verizon-caught-throttling-netflix-traffic-even-after-its-pays-for-more-bandwidth) , but Verizon doesn't appear to be throttling or shaping Netflix. They are running their peered links to Layer 3 at 100% capacity. Traffic that doesn't go via Layer 3 does not suffer. So if you find an alternative route that doesn't use Netflix's Layer 3 peering connections (such as a VPN) then things run well.

For this to be resolved, people really need to find non-Netflix services that are equally impacted and bring this up. It may well be that 90% of Verizon's Layer 3 pipe is for Netflix, but there are bound to be other services suffering. If this can be demonstrated this puts other parties into the equation and should encourage Verizon to take up Layer-3s offer of additional free peering capacity.

I suspect that Verizon would rather that Netflix isn't running at full-speed as it quietens down their overall network usage and can somewhat claim they are not capping or throttling. Perhaps Layer-3 should shut down these peering points for maintenance and let the Verizon find a way through another peer / transit, it might melt the whole of Verizon's network that way and encourage them to solve it.

Jason.

Medicine

World's Smallest Nanomotor Could Power Cell-Sized Nanobots For Drug Delivery 20

Posted by samzenpus
from the getting-small dept.
Zothecula (1870348) writes "Scientists at the Cockrell School of Engineering at the University of Texas have built and tested what appears to be the world's smallest, fastest, and longest-running nanomotor yet – so small that it could fit inside a single cell. The advance could be used to power nanobots that would deliver specific drugs to individual living cells inside the human body."

Comment: Re: Sugar (Score 1) 329

by jaseuk (#46967069) Attached to: Gaining On the US: Most Europeans To Be Overweight By 2030

Snacking is what's new. 5 isles of the supermarket and most convenience stores are all about snacks. You can eat 3 fairly significant meals a day for 2000ish calories. However a typical "lunch" deal (Sandwich-600, Soda-200 and Chocolate Bar/Muffin/Cake-300) could easily be half of that.

Theres a whole industry and part of the economy that relies on this eating between meals. It's high calorie and doesn't tend satisfy actual hunger for very long.

I sometimes feel that exercise is overplayed in these discussions as people tend to over-compensate for the exercise with eating. There is nothing wrong with being fit, it has separate health benefits, but it rarely makes a difference in weight loss. The now and then difference is that kids in earlier generations would have been expected to walk/cycle to school independently from a young age (8+ - up to 6 miles a day was typical) This does make a difference, particularly when the playstation is 20 steps from the fridge.

Jason

Comment: Re:Recruiting policy (Score 1) 589

by jaseuk (#46939273) Attached to: Microsoft Cheaper To Use Than Open Source Software, UK CIO Says

Largo did this 20 years ago, and never got into Microsoft. They are very quiet in these summaries about technology use, but they use IBM AIX / SCO unix / Oracle / Linux solutions for their business applications These are not "free beer" or even "open source". They are also using a Citrix Metaframe on Windows, so they still need Windows Server CALs, RDS CALs and so on for these users, it's unclear to what extent access to these services are required, but 8 servers should easily host 100-200 concurrent users, so this implied that for most if not all users were still utilising Windows licenses.

We are still also not comparing like-with-like. A US City Council doesn't have the same remit as a UK Unitary Authority / County Council. We have responsibility for Education (From 3 years through 19, plus lifelong learning), plus social workers / care for 3-DEATH, including residential homes for seniors and life-long care for the disabled. This somewhat complicates the staffing and application portfolio.

I've used - although it is being phased out now - a Linux based thin-client OS for our Windows Terminal Services / Citrix Environments. I wouldn't however try to claim that this is a significant use of Linux or Open Source on the Desktop.

Shrug

Jason

Comment: Re:Recruiting policy (Score 1) 589

by jaseuk (#46927983) Attached to: Microsoft Cheaper To Use Than Open Source Software, UK CIO Says

Amusingly I was the competent FOSS guy brought in to our council, after a year or so getting into the reality of the environment, I actually recommended a Microsoft EA, rather than the muddle of Linux/Windows we were using. I couldn't do *everything* and there was minimal scope for investment in new staff / training.

The grandparent post and the guy at hampshire is absolutely correct, Open Source desktop / office offers no *cost* advantage in a typical council. Working in IT for a council is an absolute slog, the app portfolio is in the hundreds, all of which are "business critical" to some team or other. Faffing around with a Linux based Desktop or Swapping out Microsoft Office is a poor use of time, which you'll soon realise is impossible without either utilising Windows licenses anyway for a terminal services solution for non-compatible apps or where App XYZ uses VBA for letter generation / mail merge etc. Before you know it, your spending more in time working out who can and can't use OpenOffice than the license itself costs. Office is one app, and in itself it's not that business critical, except for perhaps Outlook/Exchange for which there hasn't been an obvious candidate for an OS replacement.

We do of course use Open Source where it makes sense. GIS is very much going open-source, we have a few dozen CentOS/Redhat Servers (firewalls/file servers/tomcat etc.) , including our Council Tax system running on Linux. We are absolutely not scared of Open Source or Linux, but it just has a limited role on the desktop.

Jason.

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